The US State Department said it did not plan to consider withdrawing troops from Iraq. The statement came in response to a request from Prime Minister Adel Abdul-Magdi.
Magdie asked the United States to prepare for the withdrawal of troops in a telephone conversation with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Thursday, based on a decision taken by parliament after the US special operation that killed Iranian General Kasem Soleimani. Magdi appealed to Pompeo to “send representatives to enforce parliament’s decision,” according to a statement from the Iraqi official’s office.
The US delegation will not discuss the withdrawal of troops, the State Department said in response to Iraq’s request. US State Department spokeswoman Morgan Ortagus called the presence of US troops “expedient” and stressed that if a delegation was sent to Iraq, it would be concerned with “the best renewal of our strategic partnership, not to discuss the withdrawal of troops, but for the sake of faithful, expedient presence in our forces.” .
“There is, however, a need for discussion between the US and Iraqi governments on our financial, economic and diplomatic partnership,” said Ortagus.
In an interview with Fox, US President Donald Trump said – if Iraq wants the United States to leave, they have to “pay back the money we have invested.”
“We are ready to continue discussions with the Iraqis about the right structure,” Pompeo said when asked by the press about the possibility of withdrawing US troops.
“Our mission is clearly defined. We are present to carry out a training mission and to help the Iraqi security services succeed and continue their campaign against ISIL and against Daesh, ”said Pompeo.
He also announced that a team of representatives from NATO member countries was working at the State Department on how to better share the burden of activities in the region.